Three undersecretary-level bureaucrats in the HRD ministry were arrested on Wednesday evening for consuming alcohol in a public place behind Parliament House.
"Our officers were conducting a random check around the Parliament Street traffic circle at 8.30pm when they discovered three men drinking inside a Maruti 800 car," said Satyendra Garg, joint commissioner of police (traffic).
He said the drunken babus took offence at being challenged and threatened the traffic police team with dire consequences.
Although the owner-driver claimed to be from the higher education department, he did not have a driving licence or car registration documents or even his identification card.
A Delhi Police officer, part of the team that nabbed the trio, said it was later confirmed that the driver and his two friends were HRD ministry officials.
Instead of cooperating with the police, the driver tried to browbeat the police team.
The police impounded the car and returned it only after the owner paid a Rs 2,100 fine on Thursday morning.